Compact Revolver Recommendation [Archive] - Glock Talk


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12-15-2011, 21:35
Hey ladies, I've been working on getting my wife to get her CCW and carry on a regular basis for a while now. She prosecutes criminals, and while there has never been a situation that was in any way a true threat to her person, I would like her to be prepared. So on to the main event:

1) Is it possible and/or effective to conceal her weapons in her purse? I don't think she would consider really anything else, but I am worried it would be too difficult to draw or too easy to separate from her.

2) Do you have any recommendations for a small revolver she can carry? While I have a semiauto I think she would probably prefer something a little lower maintenance that also has a few safeties built into it. I'm open to the semi if someone has one they'd highly recommend, but like I said, I'm leaning more towards a small revolver. Low recoil would be a major plus because she is on the smaller side.

Thanks for the help ladies (and any gentlemen who chime in).

12-16-2011, 06:17
I too am new at the CHL business and have been doing lots and lots(and lots!) of research, but this is what I have learned.

1. Purse carry is the least favored method of carry----but it is better than not carrying at all. IF that is the route she choses, it MUST be a holster/concealed carry purse--not just any purse. She has to be in total control of it at all times. If BG steals a purse, now not only do they have the purse, they also have the weapon.

2. YOU can't chose for her. It has to be something she is comfortable with-she can and will use--and fits her hand and ability.

Have her watch the youtube videos about female conceal carry--lots of ideas, maybe she can find one that works for her

Read Tons of great information on that site--I learned things I hadn't even thought of

12-16-2011, 12:39
I must have been unclear. I'm doing the initial research because she wants me to. She doesn't know a whole lot about guns (and I'm pretty new to handguns) and prefers that I come to her with some basic recommendations and let her take it from there. All I care about is it something that will do at least a decent job of stopping the BG, is very reliable, and is something she will enjoy shooting enough to become proficient.

The youtube idea is a great one, any specific suggestions or search criteria you'd recommend?

Any holster/concealed carry purse brands you'd recommend? And if not in her purse, where could she conceal while wearing a business suit? If you (or anyone) prefers not to answer the latter question I understand.

Thanks for the website. I read through it myself and thought it was very well done.

12-16-2011, 12:52
I would reccomend a smith and Wesson k-frame. J-frames while ultra small, can be unpleasant to shoot due to the shortness of the barrel and muzzle flip. I have a S&W model 65-5 lady smith with a 3". Chambered in .357 magnum. Only shot .38spl in it so far, but it's extremely pleasant to shoot. It's still small enough to conceal as well. A model 60 is also very similar, and perhaps a bit easier to find.

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12-16-2011, 13:24
Ruger LIghtweight Compact Revolver LCR BGXS 38 spl..$575
2011 best in Class at Guntests...
Also Liked the S & W 106380 308 Auto also %575

12-16-2011, 13:57
I personally have a S&W J Frame, but I really thkn those Ruger LCR are great little buns nice thick rubber grips for recoil management and seem to be well made and get great reviews.

12-16-2011, 17:31
gun purses--I just got one from that I really think I will like--and the prices are very reasonable esp. compared to some of the other sites. And they look like purses that a woman would actually carry! My D-I-L saw mine and didn't realize that it was a carry purse till I showed her.

I got my first glock after going to the range and trying out a few. I went on a day that there were Plenty of different handguns there. I started by just looking at them on the counter. Some of them I could tell were either too big, looked like a toy, or I just didn't like and I eliminated them. Then I was picking them up to see how they fit in my hand. I narrowed it down to 5 different ones that we took out on the range and fired. with that I narrowed it to 2 and then focused on those and chose the Glock 19 so that is what I got. BUT needless to say-I'm already looking for a Glock 26!

for youtube just put in the search for women's concealed carry. There is one young girl who shows all different ways to carry and demonstrates them in different clothing. She has a swimsuit on under-so no flashing!! It gave me some ideas-but I'm still looking for a video that shows someone closer to my age-I'll never look like her again!!

12-17-2011, 15:17
Please read my previous rants against picking a revolver because she's female. I hate revolvers. For many reasons.

I love my S&W M&Ps. I have the full size and the compact both in 9mm. I also adore my HK USPc, also in 9mm. One of the two compacts is always in my purse or on my person. I have had a Coronado, a Maxpedition Fat Boy, and one offbrand POS purse (zipper didn't last a month). My only objection to them is that leather is heavy, and if you carry a BIG heavy leather purse, with a gun in it, and if you are so inclined an extra mag of 13 or more rounds... you will eventually throw out your back. Now I find the smallest purse I can still draw my gun from (and if you don't try it before you buy it, you deserve what you get), and carry that with nothing but my DL, CHL, credit card, and inhaler in it, and when I can conceal on my person, I do that instead.

Let her try every gun you own or can rent. DO NOT limit her to revolvers. And make sure she practices drawing from her purse if she is going to carry that way. It adds at least 2 seconds to your fastest draw from concealed on body carry. She needs to decide if she's willing to accept that.


12-17-2011, 17:13
+1 on getting her to a range and letting her choose for herself.

She needs a full size gun to learn and practice basics with.

I struggle to practice with a j-frame myself, as I'm done shooting it after only 20 rounds.

Start with a full size, and go to small and concealable at a later time.

You don't learn how to do something correctly by starting your learning with the most difficult tool to master.

My wife LOVES her M&P full size 9mm. With the smallest backstrap, I believe almost any woman over 4'11" will be able to get the pad of their trigger finger on the trigger face. With small hands, my wife can get her distal joint on the trigger with the M&P.

12-17-2011, 21:49
She hasn't had time to join me at the range yet but I'm hoping to get her to come so she can shoot my G17. Besides that I don't have ready access to a handgun. We're on a budget so we'll probably have to wait until she's closer to getting it and then try out her anticipated top 3, knowing she might have to try some other ones.

Thanks for all the feedback from everyone. I've learned a ton already.

And by the way, the revolver was her idea...I have no doubt as the ability of any woman to hold and operate a firearm with deadly force. I came into this marriage knowing I married an independent woman. :supergrin:

12-17-2011, 22:13
Double post.

professor gun
12-19-2011, 20:09
My wife has a Glock 26 that she likes. Recently I found a used Taurus 85 Ulta-Lite (.38 Spl) at a great price, brought it home, my wife has confiscated that and that is all she carries now. She finds it easier to conceal than her Glock 26 (she prefers pocket carry at this time).

There is a You Tube video I found recently (Concealed Carry Holsters and Outfits for Women) done by a young woman on concealed carry for women, it is excellent. I teach pistol classes for women and recommend this video to them.

12-19-2011, 20:39
Gun Toten' Mamas has a couple of purses I really like the looks of because they're cross-body with slash-resistant straps.
Three of my biggest objections to purse carry are:
1) It's too easy to snatch someone's purse
2) Gun purses tend to be ugly
3) Gun purses tend to be expensive.

If the purse has a strap that goes across the body and has a steel cable core, that makes the purse much harder to steal. Their purses are attractive (I think) and fairly affordable.

12-20-2011, 06:11
Please read my previous rants against picking a revolver because she's female. I hate revolvers. For many reasons.

I don't think it's a female thing, more of a how much time are they willing to put into it. Autos should be vetted, some of which should be done with the carry ammo. For an enthusiast, that's a non issue (a welcome invitation in fact). It is something to factor into the choice, especially for people on a tight budget, like was mentioned.

My wife used to shoot quite a bit. However, she doesn't have a strong grip. (She was spoiled with race guns that didn't require a strong grip). Could never get her to run her Kahr reliably, though it ran ok for me with ammo it liked. She is happy with her J frame for now. YMMV.

12-22-2011, 12:40
She hasn't had time to join me at the range yet but I'm hoping to get her to come so she can shoot my G17. Besides that I don't have ready access to a handgun. We're on a budget so we'll probably have to wait until she's closer to getting it and then try out her anticipated top 3, knowing she might have to try some other ones.

Thanks for all the feedback from everyone. I've learned a ton already.

And by the way, the revolver was her idea...I have no doubt as the ability of any woman to hold and operate a firearm with deadly force. I came into this marriage knowing I married an independent woman. :supergrin:

Some people love the small lightweight revolver snubbie, some hate them.

My wife is an NRA pistol instructor and has 17 different handguns to choose from. She loves the S&W 637 snubbie .38 revolver. It has the typical external hammer that you can cock back if you want, giving it a light trigger pull. Or, if you leave the hammer down then the trigger pull is long and harder. User choice. In an emergancy, you'd probably be just pulling the trigger, and not cocking the hammer first (just a guess).

I liked her revolver so much, I bought the S&W 642 for myself. That has the internal hammer, so you don't get the option of cocking it first. The advantage is the hammer can't snag on clothing.

Both of these small revolvers are about 15 ounces, and carry and conceal easily. They are accurate as any other gun, but hard for the average shooter to be accurate with them. The main accuracy difficulty is the sights are small and close together (short sight radius). That makes it difficult for the average shooter to be precise with them. And if shooting without the hammer cocked (thus you are shooting in what is called double action, without the hammer pre-cocked), then the trigger pull is heavy, making it harder to stay on target. With the hammer cocked (single action), and with time to align the sights, they are quite accurate. For self-defense at close range, the accuracy probably doesn't matter as much as when we are target shooting. I mean of course hits matter, but a 2" group versus a 6" group might not matter, as long as the hits are solid at vitals to stop the attack. But it certainly gives a shooter more confidence to know they can shoot a gun accurately. With the typical shooter, the snubbie makes obtaining the accuracy they want at the target range difficult.

Recoil of these small snubbies is typically more severe than a comparable semi-auto. But search for 148gr wadcutters, they are mildest shooting of the .38 you will find. Honestly, if you get a revolver, get that kind of ammo before you try anything else.

There are lots of other options to choose from, with semi-autos. But keep in mind that a small semi-auto seems for whatever reason to have increased chances of jamming. Sometimes it takes an experienced shooter, modification to how you grip it, and tinkering with the gun or the mags or finding the right ammo, to make a small semi-auto be reliable. I don't want to make too big of a deal of this, because many will be reliable, but it is all too common for a new shooter and a small semi-auto to experience jams.

Revolvers are typically more reliable (they can have problems too, but less likely), and they certainly do not care how you hold them. Just keep your fingers back of the cylinder, so they don't don't get burned by the hot gases coming out of the gap between the cylinder and the barrel.

Personally, I like the Ruger LCP .380, Kahr PM9 (or CM9 as the less expensive version) 9mm, and the Glock 26 9mm. None of those 3 have external safeties to fiddle with. If she want's external safeties, then there are others to look at such as the S&W Bodyguard .380, or the Ruger LC9 9mm.

Obviously, let her choose. If looking at a Glock, suggest looking at the Gen 4 models, because they have interchangeable backstraps that fit smaller hands better. The 26 has a short grip, and the 19 has a longer grip. Great guns, but sometimes too big and heavy, compared to a lightweight snubbie .38 or a small .380 semi-auto.

Beware that the small .380 semi-auto can have a severe recoil. Larger guns, all other things equal, recoil less. My wife prefers shooting the snubbie .38 and does not mind the recoil with that. But she does not like the PPK .380, nor the Ruger LCP .380, does not like their felt recoil. She will still occassionally carry a .380 for ultra concealment, but doesn't like to shoot them much. She does like to shoot her snubbie .38 revolver.

My own opinion is I find the Glock 26 (that I love) to be a little too heavy and a little too big for all day, every day, every situation, concealed carry. It has a great reputation for great reliability, but to me, that gun is at the upper limit in size and weight for concealed carry (I know lots of people carry bigger guns, I just saying my opinion here). I find my Kahr PM9 or my snubbie .38 to be much more comfortable. The Ruger LCP .380 is even more comfortable and easy to carry because it is only about 9 ounces and is thin. I think my wife would agree with that, but she still does sometimes carry her Springfield EMP 9mm (1911 style gun), which is even heavier than the Glock 26. But she'll carry the snubbie or the .380 more often.

If my wife could only have one gun, I would not be surprised if she chose her S&W 637 snubbie .38 revolver. But your wife will have to decide for herself.

I'm not against the Ruger LCR (their snubbie revolver), either. We just happen to prefer the S&W. And I'm fond of the Kahr 9mm semi-autos. My wife would be a Kahr fan if not for the jams ours had early on (she doesn't trust it now). She shot the Kahr fine, has shot a couple different models of them fine, with low recoil, high accuracy. But if a gun ends up having a jam problem, it may take a bit to get over it. She prefers the guns she's never had a jam problem with.

Good luck :)